F1 is on course for a sharp change of direction after 2016.
Ferrari boss Maurizio Arrivabene is calling for a “revolution” on the technical front, as Bernie Ecclestone also looks to spice up the sport’s speed and sound just a year after the all-new turbo V6 era dawned.
Renault, also trailing behind F1’s dominant force Mercedes, is similarly open to change.
“Renault would not get in the way, so long as costs are kept under control,” boss Cyril Abiteboul told the broadcaster Canal Plus.
He said the idea of louder and more powerful engines is “attractive”, but “it seems too late for 2016. 2017 would be the ideal time”.
Proposals are already beginning to emerge. Even McLaren’s new works partner Honda is not opposed, having reportedly suggested a ramping up of the sport’s new non-combustion engine propulsion techniques for 2017.
Also according to Germany’s Auto Motor und Sport, Ferrari is suggesting a 2.2 litre twin-turbo V8, revving to 17,000rpm with a standard KERS system.
Some, however, suspect that Renault and Ferrari are so keen on the idea of change simply because they are trailing Mercedes under the current engine regime.
“Of course!” Mercedes chief Toto Wolff told Sport Bild.
“That’s formula one. But we accept the challenge even when it comes to talking about the engine. You just have to be sensible,” he added.
Wolff said radically departing from the basic 1.6 litre V6 of today is out of the question.
“All the engine manufacturers have expressed the wish that we keep the current architecture,” said the Austrian, “because anything else would bring high development costs.” (GMM)